Well, another New York Times reporter has gotten himself kidnapped by the Taliban in Afghanistan. And once again, the Times chose to sit on the story until after he was freed. This time, Stephen Farrell was held for a couple of days before British commandos rescued him (at the cost of one of their own). Previously, the Times sat on the story of David Rohde’s capture for eight months before he escaped.
That the Times should choose to not cover these events as news is not something that they should be condemned for. Rather, it shows a certain sense of priorities and propriety and responsibility for which they should be lauded.
Pity they don’t demonstrate the same traits when it’s people not in its employ who are at risk.
If that was the case, then they would not have published the name and home town of one of the best terrorist interrogators we have — especially after he and the US government begged them not to identify him.
If that was the case, then the Times would be all over the ACLU’s current project to follow and photograph covert CIA employees, then show those photos to accused terrorists.
If that was the case, then the Times would not have published the identifying tail numbers and other details of planes the CIA used to transport accused terrorists.
So now we see the Times has no problem understanding the need for secrecy. It depends on how will affect their balance sheet. If it means they might be subjected to the expenses of a dead employee, then they will keep it quiet. But if it means they might sell more papers, then it is part of “all the news that’s fit to print.”
Thanks for clarifying that for us, New York Times.